Blog Archive

"I chose this butterfly, which I now call my freedom butterfly. You see, butterflies are things of beauty and fly without being trapped." - Bernie

Posted on December 06, 2017

Bernie

"He wanted me to get a tattoo. I got one and he got angry because it wasn't big enough. I found out that there was another woman who had a tattoo and he wanted me to be like her. There was a problem, she was petite and like a doll. Her style was very different from mine. I love my casual wear but he tried so hard to direct me towards heels and jeans with glitter and slinky tops . I began to hate going out, because what I wore became an issue and unknown to me, I was competing with a doll. The abuse was verbal, emotional and physical. I was told I was big, and the punches came when he wasn't pleased with how I looked. Here I was in my 40s getting another tattoo. He was adamant that this one had to be big. For me, it is big because the pain was bad. But he still wasn't happy because it couldn't be seen but I wanted it to be discreet.

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Permanent link | Categories: Women's Voices 2017Day 126th December 2017

Guest Blog: Out of Silence – the impact of domestic violence on women’s mental health by Orla O'Connor

Posted on December 06, 2017

Orla O'Connor

Women experiencing domestic violence often describe the mental torture caused by their abuser.

Abusive relationships have a significant negative impact to a woman’s mental health. When a woman is continually being abused by an intimate partner and put down, her autonomy and belief in herself is continually eroded. Her abuser may use her mental pain against her, accusing her of being ‘insecure’, of being ‘paranoid’, of being ‘crazy’. The cycle of abuse, physical, emotional and sexual is inherently damaging to a woman's mental health. 

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Permanent link | Categories: Guest BlogDay 126th December 2017

Day 12: Domestic abuse impacts on women's mental and physical health

Posted on December 06, 2017

Health impacts

Women and children experiencing domestic violence should never been portrayed as passive victims. Women’s Aid continues to be inspired by the women who use our services. Women, who are trying to live their lives, raise their children, study, work, and look after themselves and others, but who are doing so while suffering the most horrific abuse.

Women’s strength and resilience in the face of unimaginable abuse and fear, should not be underestimated. Yet, the impact of the abuse on the women we meet, cannot be minimised or downplayed.

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Permanent link | Categories: 16 Facts for 16 Days6th December 2017Day 12

Day 11: 41% of abused women experience online stalking and harassment.

Posted on December 05, 2017

Digital Abuse

Digital abuse in intimate relationships is real and it is harmful. We have long been concerned about disclosures of digital abuse made to our National Freephone Helpline and other services.  In 2015, we took a snapshot of the issue in our National Freephone Helpline and One to One services and we recorded 293 disclosures of digital abuse. While the Women’s Aid snapshot is a small number of cases, we know that the phenomenon is real and growing year on year, especially for younger women.

A recent EU wide study on violence against women showed that 12% of Irish women and girls over the age of 15 had experienced stalking with 50% being stalked, physically and online, by a partner or ex (FRA, 2014).

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Permanent link | Categories: 16 Facts for 16 Days5th December 2017Day 11

"As soon as I was pregnant everything changed' - Kate

Posted on December 04, 2017

Kate Pregnancy

"My mother passed away when I was a young single parent. I met this guy who instantly put me up on a pedestal. I was grieving and raising a child on my own and here was this man offering me all that I wanted; a loving family, the happy ever after that we all look for. He really wanted a child and as soon as I was pregnant, everything changed.

When I had the baby, it got worse and I realised he wanted me pregnant so he had a bit more control over me.

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Permanent link | Categories: Women's Voices 20174th December 2017Day 10

"...I was two months pregnant and he beat me. A couple of days later, I lost the baby." - Nina

Posted on December 04, 2017

Nina

"I was two months pregnant and he beat me. A couple of days later, I lost the baby and he said to me, 'You must not have taken care of the baby properly. That's why you miscarried.' What a thing to say to a woman.

As always, all the blame was on me, but it wasn't my fault, I tried to protect us. I lost a second child a couple of years later.

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Permanent link | Categories: Women's Voices 2017Day 104th December 2017

Day 10: 1 in 8 pregnant women experience abuse

Posted on December 04, 2017

one in eight women

No one ever deserves to be beaten, threatened, raped and insulted. However, nowhere is domestic violence more stark or disturbing than during pregnancy. Women's Aid is deeply concerned about the prevalence of abuse of women during pregnancy and the post-natal period.

Pregnancy does not offer protection to domestic violence. In fact, international research has found that 30% of women who experience domestic violence are physically assaulted for the first time during pregnancy (Child Protection and Welfare Handbook, HSE, 2011).

The Rotunda Hospital conducted research which found that 1 in 8 women surveyed were being abused during their current pregnancy (O'Donnell et all, 2000).

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Permanent link | Categories: 16 Facts for 16 Days4th December 2017Day 10

"At first I started running to change myself for him, but I ended up enjoying it for myself"- Denise

Posted on December 03, 2017

Denise

"We met when we were 17 and ended up doing the same course in college. He was verbally abusive towards me, in person and in texts. One day, in class, I had to stand up and give a presentation and was using my phone as a timer.

As I was giving the presentation I kept receiving text after text from him telling me I was stupid, and what I was saying didn't make sense, that I wasn't smart enough to be doing the course and that everyone in the class thought the same.

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Permanent link | Categories: Women's Voices 20173rd December 2017

Day 9: 60% of abuse starts before the age of 25.

Posted on December 03, 2017

Day 9 Dating Abuse

You don't have to be in a 'domestic' relationship to experience abuse.  Dating abuse affects young women in Ireland.  In a national survey on domestic violence in Ireland almost 60% of people who were severely abused said that the abuse started when they were under 25 years old.  ,

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Permanent link | Categories: 16 Facts for 16 Days3rd December 2017Day 9

"...After the physical assault I googled domestic abuse. I felt sick. I read the warning signs and could relate to nearly all of them." - Debbie

Posted on December 02, 2017

Debbie

"I remember someone said to me 'He sure did assault the wrong woman.' I thought he assaulted the right woman as I am now not afraid to speak up through Women's Aid to help somebody else.

I cannot believe I stayed so long in that environment, I had such a lucky escape. Yet in other ways, I still can't believe I got out, with no ties, what would have become of me if I didn't get out the way I did? I don't know where I went the two years I was with him. I completely lost my voice and my independent self. I got off a plane after working and travelling the other side of the world and walked straight into hell.

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Permanent link | Categories: Women's Voices 20172nd December 2017

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